The network will be a common site for manufacturers, carriers, and public safety agencies to test and evaluate advanced broadband communications equipment and software.

Agencies Seek Partners for Demo Communications Network

Telecommunications companies are invited to help two agencies create the network for use by the nation's emergency responders.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration announced Oct. 14 they are looking for telecommunications partners to help them create a demonstration broadband communications network for emergency services agencies. The network is being created by the joint NIST-NTIA Public Safety Communications Research (PSCR) program as a common site for manufacturers, carriers, and public safety agencies to test and evaluate advanced broadband communications equipment and software.

It will use part of the 700 MHz radio spectrum available since U.S. broadcast television switched from analog to digital last year.

Alcatel-Lucent became the first partner when it signed a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement in September 2010. The agencies want to establish a multi-vendor network now, as well as for the eventual working system that is built. Partners may donate equipment, provide access to infrastructure, or support tests. Alcatel-Lucent, for example, has supplied Long Term Evolution Bandclass 14 equipment.

Companies interested in becoming partners on the demonstration network project should contact Dereck Orr (303-497-5400, dereck.orr@nist.gov) or Jeff Bratcher (303-497-4610, jbratcher@its.bldrdoc.gov) for information.

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